How Do We Change?

by | May 9, 2023 | Personal Growth

Someone recently asked me, “What is the key to unlocking the changes we are looking for inside of us? Should I be focusing more on my body? My feelings? Challenging my thoughts? Working with my inner child?  Where is the magic sauce?” 

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just know where to focus our energies and efforts for optimal change?  

For me, those AHA moments on our journeys work a  little more like a combination lock, where we need to get the right combination of numbers all aligned in a row to unlock something that feels stuck inside of us. 

We work with multiple aspects of ourselves in consistent and cumulative ways, and eventually, we reach a magic combination of dosage, duration and degree – and something shifts, releases and gets freed up  – almost “effortlessly” in that moment! 

While the process of working on things may be universal, the exact combination and code needed is unique to each of us.   

We all have different histories, skills, capacities and experiences to work through.

We each have different inner blueprints, values and life purposes to align with.

With that said, however, here are 7 general domains that you might want to consider as you think about the various practices that support you in unlocking your unique inner transformation and healing path: 

  1. Awareness: Bringing what is unaware into awareness. Making what is unconscious, more conscious.  Making the implicit, explicit. 
  2. Nervous system regulation:  Creating safety in the here and now, self-soothing, discharging stress from your body in healthy ways. 
  3. Cognition:  Challenging beliefs that no longer work for you, reframing judgments, moving out of binary thinking into non-binary thinking, thinking through paradoxes and polarities. 
  4. Emotions: Feeling the unfelt.  Naming emotions and sensations accurately and precisely. Willingness to be uncomfortable when it serves your higher purpose, processing emotions and attuning to emotions as data.  Watch me as I discuss what it takes to make peace with ALL of our feelings.  
  5. Needs & Motivations: Developing a needs-consciousness around human behaviors and motivations, distinguishing between strategies and needs, aligning with deep life energy as it wells up from within.
  6. Choicefulness:  Remembering to stay in shared humanity and our choice to respond to whatever is arising in each moment.  Bringing ourselves up from shame and down from grandiosity.  Staying conscious of our responses to imperfect conditions.  I discussed the importance of Reclaiming Choice in a recent blog entry.  
  7. Presence:  Commitment to focusing on the here and now, where all healing happens, instead of getting lost in memory and imagination, past and future.   

This is not an exhaustive list, but perhaps just a good start as you consider your own pathways for healing, growth and learning this week.  

Have a comment?  I ‘d love to know!  Please write it below!


  1. Harry mullin

    Spending some time in the icu recently – complete with wiring and monitors, I noticed what Little AWARENESS I have of my heart’s actual functioning. Something about INCESSANT alarms all night that helps to focus the mind wonderfully. Well, wonderfully once I could let go of demanding my circumstances could be other than they arr.

    I’d love to hear what methods you have for self AWARENESS and regulation of your heart. Anyone familiar with this he or ork done by the Heart Math Institute?

    • Kaye

      That question has been rolling around in me for a long time. The seven domains was really helpful and that it is a combination specific to each individual. It also confirmed my hypothesis about what i needed to work on: 1 through 7.

  2. Gail Tully

    The seventh area, Presence, is like the emerging understanding of vibrational frequency. Tuning our frequency, coming into coherence, seems to modulate the first 6. In the 70s this seemed to be an attitude but today, with better science, “Raising our Vibe” is connected to presence, a sine wave pattern in heart rate and coherence with brain waves. I’m just learning about this (agree with Harry’s nod to HeartMath Institute and also, a more casual but also paradigm shifting company, Biofield tuning). Yvette gives the tools in all 7 Pathways listed to live with the new-found flow of coherence. I picture 7 orbs radiating and orbiting together.


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